Launched African Climate Dialogues Focusing on “realities, experiences”: Catholic Entities

Credit: CIDSE

The African Climate Dialogues (ACD) that were launched Tuesday, July 19 seek to deliberate on key issues related to the climate crisis ahead of the planned 27th Climate Change Conference of Partners (COP27) scheduled for November 6-18 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, the International Cooperation for Development Solidarity (CIDSE) has said.

In a press release shared with ACI Africa ahead of the event, officials of CIDSE, the umbrella organization for Catholic development agencies in Europe and North America, outline the stakeholders, objectives, and value of the dialogues.

The dialogues, CIDSE officials say, “bring together Church and civil society actors including communities and religious leaders from across the African continent and European organizations.”

“The main goal of the dialogues is to discuss African realities, personal experiences and perspectives on key topics related to the climate crisis,” they say in their Tuesday, July 19 press release, the day the dialogues were launched. 

CIDSE officials further say that the African Climate Dialogues are to involve a series of meetings that will focus on “on key topics” during the months of August and September 2022, “when expert participants will be invited to share their perspectives, discuss priorities and put forward solutions.”


Inspired by Pope Francis’ call for the ongoing preparations for the Synod on Synodality that is about “journeying together in dialogue”, and his May 2015 Encyclical Letter, Laudato Si’, CIDSE officials say that the discussions are to be guided by Social Teachings of the Catholic Church. 

“These participatory dialogues will reflect on climate realities of communities on the ground through the lens of Catholic Social Teachings, as well as climate science, distilling concrete policy outputs for COP27,” officials of the umbrella organization for Catholic development agencies in Europe and North America say in their July 19 press release shared with ACI Africa.

The outputs of these dialogues, they say, are “to be shared ahead of and during COP27 through a joint communiqué.”

The outputs will be “composed of inputs from climate realities on the ground, spiritual and technical reflections directed at governments at the national, regional and international levels,” CIDSE officials say.

They add, “In a time of climate crisis, it is more than ever necessary to urgently implement the Paris Agreement by considering transformative approaches with long-term solutions, especially for countries in Africa where climate impacts are already dangerously widespread.”

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“Science is clear that we stand to face unavoidable multiple climate hazards over the next two decades with global warming of 1.5°C (2.7°F),” the energy and climate officer for CIDSE has been quoted as saying in the July 19 press release.

Lydia Machaka adds, “Already we are feeling dire climate impacts and people and ecosystems least able to cope are being hardest hit. COP27 must deliver real and urgent climate action now and we must put our differences aside and unite towards protecting and preserving our common home!”

In the July 19 press release, the Executive Secretary of the African Europe Faith Justice Network (AEFJN), Chika Onyejiuwa, has been quoted as saying, “African communities are among the most vulnerable to climate change impacts in the world. Carbon trade leaves more questions unanswered in the climate negotiations and should be thrown out in COP 27.” 

On his part, the representative at Catholic Youth Network for Environmental Sustainability in Africa (CYNESA), Francisca Ziniel, focuses on young people

“The youth are bearing a disproportionate burden in this climate crisis and they must be involved to a larger extent around the discussions and the negotiations,” Ms. Ziniel says, and adds in reference to young people, “Ensuring that a majority of them are there and have a say when decisions about their future are made is imperative to changing the tide and inducing the much-needed change.”


Young people, she explains, “have the numbers, the capacity and solutions to address the global challenges confronting the world.”

For officials of the Ecclesial Network Alliance, “As the dialogues create spaces for listening, reflection, debate and construction of solutions from a global perspective, they are connecting the priority biomes and territories for the planet (Congo, Amazon region, Mesoamerica, Asia, Guaraní Aquifer) so that different voices around the world can be heard with their complaints and suggestions.”

Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.